ARCHBISHOP CARROLL ENDS ATHENS' RUN IN 'SWEET 16' OF 4A PLAYOFFS
By: Tim Birney | AthensWildcats.com | March 11, 2022 | Photo courtesy David Alliger
SHAMOKIN — Archbishop Carroll used an early 19-2 run to take control,
and end Athens’ season with an 83-38 win in the “Sweet 16” of the PIAA,
Class 4A boys basketball playoffs here Friday night.
“I’m so proud of this team,” said Athens coach Jim Lister. “There is nothing for them to hang their heads about.”
Troy Pritchard scored off a feed from junior Mason Lister to tie the
game at 3-3 less than a minute into the game, but Archbishop Carroll
scored the next 12 points in a 16-2 run to close the opening stanza with
a 19-5 lead.
Moses Hipps knocked down a 3-pointer in the opening moments of the second quarter to extend the Patriots’ lead to 22-5.
came out and had some good looks, we just didn’t make the shots,” said
Lister. “Archbishop Carroll is an excellent basketball team. Take
nothing away from them, they made the shots.
“And Moses (Hipps) was excellent,” added Lister. “Even with two guys in his face, he was draining 3s from everywhere.”
who finished the game with 31 points and six 3-pointers, knocked down a
trio of 3-pointers and scored 12 points in the second quarter to fuel a
25-16 run that gave Archbishop Carrol a 44-21 led at the half.
Patriots continued the onslaught in the second half, outscoring Athens
2011 in the third quarter, and 13-6 in the final eight minutes.
not taking anything away from (Archbishop Carroll) at all, but the
private Catholic schools and the charter schools in Pennsylvania are
just at a different level,” said Lister.
“I think we got to see that tonight,” he added.
led Athens with 15 points, three assists, and one blocked shot, while
senior J.J. Babcock had eight points, six rebounds, four blocked shots,
and three steals, and Pritchard had six points and two rebounds.
Chris Mitchell added four points and a team-high eight rebounds, while
senior Nalen Carling chipped in with three points, and Lister had four
boards and two assists.
The Wildcats graduate five seniors in Babcock, Carling, Carling, Pritchard and Ryan Thompson.
been with these kids for 10 years,” said Lister. “They’ve shown the way
on what you need to do to be successful in the game of basketball.
been playing since a very young age. They played in leagues, they
played AAUs, and they played in summer league,” he noted.
“They were always working on their game, and they played together. They were always a team, it was never a bunch of individuals.
so proud of them, and so happy for them. They are a great bunch of
kids, and I have no doubt they will be extremely successful in life,” he
added. “I could not be happier about how their final season went.”
Lister knows his seniors will be tough to replace, but he believes he has plenty of talent returning.
told the underclassmen after the game … I hope they learned from our
seniors, and what it takes to be successful because they have some
pretty big shoes to fill.
“Mason (Lister) is our only starter
returning, but Chris Mitchell improved tremendously,” said Lister. “I
think he’ll be pretty dominant underneath for us next year.
Kraft got some experience and will be a senior next year, and we have
some really good under classmen,” noted Lister. “Korey Miller will be
able to handle the ball, and Xavier Watson and Kolsen Keathley will play
huge parts in our program starting next year.
“There’s no reason
we can’t make a pretty good run next year. I think we’ll have all the
tools — we’ll have kids who can score, we’ll have size, and we’ll have
“We’ll put the time and work in to see that they’re ready come November,” he added.
Athens wraps up the 2021-22 campaign with a 21-8 record.
About the Author
Tim Birney is the founder / owner of River Road Media Group. He was born and raised in the Valley, graduating from Waverly High School in 1984.
Birney earned an Associate's Degree in Journalism from SUNY Morrisville in 1986 and a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism / Public Relations from Utica College of Syracuse University in 1988. He began his newspaper career at The Daily Review in Towanda in 1989, before moving on to The Evening Times in 1995. He spent more than 10 years at the Times, the last four as Managing Editor.
River Road Media Group includes five sites in "The Sports Reports" family that cover 24 school districts in five counties: Valley Sports Report (launched Aug. 10, 2009), Tioga County (NY) Sports Report (Aug. 13, 2018), and Northern Tier Sports Report (Aug. 31, 2020); Northern Tier West Sports Report (March 15, 2021) Southern Tier Sports Report (Aug. 16, 2021).